“Are you an engineer?” I get this question a lot when I share the name of my employer. No, I’m not. “How did you end up in Aerospace?” is usually the next question to follow, the inquirer sporting a lifted eyebrow and slight smirk. How does a History major end up working in an industry concerning things that fly?
For those that aren’t familiar, aerospace encompasses aeronautics and Space flight. According to Wikipedia, Aerospace describes the human effort in science, engineering and business to fly in the atmosphere of Earth (aeronautics) and surrounding space (astronautics).
Honeywell and its legacy companies - Sperry, Bendix, Garrett, AiResearch, Pioneer, Lycoming, Grimes, King and AlliedSignal - have been at the forefront of both military and civilian aviation history. Celebrating 100 years in aviation, Honeywell Aerospace innovates and integrates thousands of products and services to advance and easily deliver safe, efficient, productive and comfortable experiences worldwide.
How I Fit In
How do I fit into that story? My career path includes employers from a variety of industries. Right after college, I started with a firm that contracted computer programmers and software engineers to local businesses then quickly moved to a temporary structure manufacturer. My next assignment took me to country radio followed by time supporting leaders in the quick service food industry. It was upon leaving the restaurant business and moving to Phoenix that I found my story became part of year 89 of Honeywell’s history.
New to the desert and looking for employment, a placement agency advisor called to tell me about an opening with a major employer in the area. The position supported key members of leadership in Strategic Marketing and Sales for the Americas. “They take good care of their employees”, she told me. An afternoon of interviewing and some follow-up calls later and I received a job offer in June 2003 to work for the largest manufacturer of aircraft engines and avionics. More than ten years later, I’ve learned about the Air Transport and Regional business and received an education in Business and General Aviation. I’m celebrating my first year in the Defense and Space business soon. It’s been an exciting adventure and holds the anticipation of many more to come.
Am I an engineer? No, but you don’t have to be one to be a part of this exciting industry. And that’s how a non-engineering major ended up in Aerospace.